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  1. #1
    Array Uthman's Avatar
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    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU. (OP)


    By Tariq Ramadan

    Sarkozy's argument won't wash. This great nation, a crucial link with the Muslim world, would be a major asset for the union.


    When on his recent visit to Turkey President Obama called for Turkish entry into the European Union, he put his finger on a strategic and cultural sore spot. The French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, speaking for the majority position in Europe, was quick to respond: Turkey may one day enjoy a privileged relationship with the EU, but full membership is out of the question. Turkey is not European – geographically or culturally.

    Interpretations of the US stance are numerous and contradictory, but they highlight deep tensions within Europe on the issue. Some believe the US is concerned primarily with securing access to the energy reserves of the Caspian basin; others suspect Washington of using Turkish alignment with American policy (by way of Nato) to exert pressure on its European allies; still others see an attempt to weaken Europe by placing a Turkish economic, demographic and cultural millstone around its neck.

    None of these hypotheses is wholly accurate or inaccurate. Nevertheless, they do reveal Europe's continuing contortions over its identity and its future. The Turkish question rarely figures in the foreground of European debate today, yet its spectre hovers over discussions of "European identity", "immigration" and the "Muslim question".

    Political parties that call for an increasingly narrow view of Europe are gaining ground. These parties promote a strictly Judeo-Christian perspective of European history, mistrust of Islam, repressive hardline immigration policies and reject a Turkey they claim is overpopulated and excessively Muslim.

    Europeans have become fearful. Economic crisis has brought with it calls for greater security and for protection of purchasing power, and from "foreigners" and "immigrants", who are seen as threatening financial stability and cultural homogeneity. Seen from this perspective, the Turkish question reveals both centripetal (a sense of "standing together" against outside threats) and centrifugal (a lack of shared strategic or foreign policy orientations) forces within the EU.

    The arguments that locate Turkey outside European history and geography cannot withstand analysis. For more than four centuries the Ottoman empire shared and shaped the political and strategic future of the continent. During the late 19th and early 20th century, it became the "sick man of Europe". Even today, Turkey's historical and economic influence continues to be substantial.

    No one is likely to be fooled by attempts to redraw the geographical boundaries of Europe for ideological or political purposes. If we were to apply the same criteria across the board, Cyprus would not be part of Europe. Such artificial distinctions ignore history, just as they ignore the realities of European society itself, where national origins, memories and cultures have long met and blended. Approximately 40% of Turkey's population is of European origin; millions of Turks have already acquired the nationality of a European country.

    We must look elsewhere for the real issues, and we must look them in the eye. Instead of being obsessed by the question of culture and religion, European leaders would be better advised to develop a forward-looking strategic vision. Given its close ties with Iran, Syria, Iraq and central Asia, Turkey simply cannot be ignored. Its economic and military clout should be integrated into a European policy based on good-neighbourly relations and stability in Asia and the Middle East.

    On two recent occasions the Turkish government has refused to bow to Washington, demonstrating a distinct capacity for independent action. Europe can hardly fault the US for its unilateral behaviour while failing to develop an autonomous foreign policy of its own. Where there should be a unified European voice, there is a discordant chorus. The US, China and India have no reason to fear European power. Divided, lacking a common policy, Europe succeeds only in working against itself.

    Meanwhile, commercial ties between Turkey and the European countries have continued to expand. Between 1990 and 2003, Turkish imports from Europe grew threefold, while exports quadrupled. Better trade management within the framework of an EU-wide economic policy should make these ties stronger and more competitive. The countries of Europe are facing an acute, long-term manpower shortage. Writing in internal EU publications, some specialists now argue the labour market will require an additional 15 million workers in the next 20 years. Europe needs immigration. Instead of adopting restrictive immigration policies that would criminalise both undocumented and legal immigrants, the EU should be moving toward realistic and responsible regulation. In this light Turkey, with its human resources, would prove a powerful ally.

    It is time for the countries of Europe to overcome their fear of Islam; time for them to stop turning Turkish EU membership into a cultural battleground. The only criteria to membership should be those of Copenhagen (1993) – and a European commission report (2004) mentioned that Turkey is very close to satisfying them. European politicians are ready to ignore their countries' long-term socioeconomic needs in order to respond to the short-term religious and cultural fears of their constituencies. Millions of women and men are already European and Muslim; Turkish EU membership would be nothing new, and present no dangers. Islam is, de facto, a European religion; culturally, politically and economically, Turkey forms an integral part of its future.

    We need courageous European politicians who will develop a new vision of Turkish-EU relations, who will remind their citizens that Turkey, by virtue of its economic power, geography, history and natural position as go-between with the "Muslim world", is a major asset for Europe and for its future. Instead of waiting until historical necessity forces the EU to incorporate Turkey, European statesmen should be working together to develop a clear, reasonable policy leading to Turkish membership – one that would respect political principles and recognise cultural and religious diversity. Welcoming Turkey into the EU would mean Europe would have to reconcile itself with its own principles: the principles it has all too often betrayed in practice.

    Source

    Tariq Ramadan is a Professor of Islamic Studies. He teaches at Oxford and at Erasmus University.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.


    "I spent thirty years learning manners, and I spent twenty years learning knowledge."

    ~ 'Abdullāh bin al-Mubārak (rahimahullah)

  2. #21
    GuestFellow's Avatar
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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blackpool View Post
    The European Union benefits the poor and is a disadvantage to the rich, such as the UK. It's fantastic for the likes of Poland, Slovenia, Bulgaria etc. For us in the UK it makes us think "we lost our men in the world wars for no reason at all. Our soldiers will be turning in their grave!"
    I disagree to some extent. The richer countries have more power in decision making and in the voting process for legislation. Thus more likely to make decision that would favour richer countries.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    I was looking at myself talking to myself and I realized this conversation...I was having with myself looking at myself was a conversation with myself that I needed to have with myself.

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    north_malaysian's Avatar
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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    why Europeans are so afraid with non-European immigrants?

    There are many Europeans migrated to Asia... should we kick them out too?
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Assalamualaykum... I am back!!

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    Blackpool's Avatar
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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Guestfellow View Post
    I disagree to some extent. The richer countries have more power in decision making and in the voting process for legislation. Thus more likely to make decision that would favour richer countries.
    And for that it is costing us £40million a day which goes to the EU which is an annual contribution of £14.6Billion. This is shared out amongst the poor, as it did with Rep. of Ireland a few years ago who very quickly became rich. We're worst off in the EU and I'm totally 100% against the joining of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by north_malaysian View Post
    why Europeans are so afraid with non-European immigrants?

    There are many Europeans migrated to Asia... should we kick them out too?
    A clash of culture and the corruption of the middle east is what puts many off non-Europeans. There is also a deep resentment towards the West in the middle East.

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    north_malaysian's Avatar
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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackpool View Post
    There is also a deep resentment towards the West in the middle East.
    then.. why there are lots of Westerners in cities like Dubai, Doha and Abu Dhabi?
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Assalamualaykum... I am back!!

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackpool View Post
    And for that it is costing us £40million a day which goes to the EU which is an annual contribution of £14.6Billion. This is shared out amongst the poor, as it did with Rep. of Ireland a few years ago who very quickly became rich. We're worst off in the EU and I'm totally 100% against the joining of the EU.
    Sources please? Just interested looking at the statistics.

    We do need the EU for better communications, ease of travel, business trades and so on.

    If I was in the European Commission, I would too support the poorer countries. Majority of the citizens in rich countries are far too materialistic. We need to be grateful for the things we have.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    I was looking at myself talking to myself and I realized this conversation...I was having with myself looking at myself was a conversation with myself that I needed to have with myself.

  9. #26
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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thinker View Post
    That would mean Turkish (Muslim) soldiers fighting alongside non-believers in conflicts like Afghanistan and that would contribute to greater stability in the world but what about verse 3:28?
    so joining the EU requires verse 3:28? - and how is it even going to bring greater stability in the world? Joining the EU has very little to do with Afghanistan - thats whats your mind does not mean its on Turkeys mind or the EU - niether does it mean that Turkey has to send troops to Afghanistan.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Do you think the pious don't sin?

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    Took ownership of it and don't justify it
    And acted with excellence after they had erred - Ibn al-Qayyim

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    Thinker's Avatar
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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by north_malaysian View Post
    why Europeans are so afraid with non-European immigrants?

    There are many Europeans migrated to Asia... should we kick them out too?
    Because the reason they want in to the EU is because they want to migrate to the UK and as soon as they get to the UK they want to change the culture of the country to same culture that caused the country the left to fail. If they would come and integrate and adopt a culture which is a proven success they would be welcome. It’s got nothing to do with colour, race or creed it’s all about culture' the problem is separating Islam from culture because there are aspects of the Islamic culture that are incompatible with a culture focused on prosperity.

  11. #28
    Thinker's Avatar
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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zafran View Post
    so joining the EU requires verse 3:28? - and how is it even going to bring greater stability in the world? Joining the EU has very little to do with Afghanistan - thats whats your mind does not mean its on Turkeys mind or the EU - niether does it mean that Turkey has to send troops to Afghanistan.
    You said . . . "Turkey should be allowed in the EU anyway - its a vital asset of Nato"

    Nato Article 5
    The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defence recognised by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area


    If Turkey becomes a part of Nato it would have to subscribe the above which means it would be duty bound to fight alongside Nato troops against any enemy including Muslims. I believe if they would agree to that it would make for a more stable world. Of course you and I know how many ways that would breach Islamic teachings inclusing 3:28.

    You might also want to note that Cyprus is now protected by article 5.

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    ^first of all, it's been the Europeans colonizing and attacking everyone else for as long as I can remember, so no worries there, also the article states "Such actions it deems necessary", not requiring the use of force except if the member state wishes to.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    ” إن الأمة التي تحسن صناعة الموت توهب لها الحياة”

    正直・・・微妙

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Guestfellow View Post
    Sources please? Just interested looking at the statistics.

    We do need the EU for better communications, ease of travel, business trades and so on.

    If I was in the European Commission, I would too support the poorer countries. Majority of the citizens in rich countries are far too materialistic. We need to be grateful for the things we have.
    My mistake...

    The UK has paid over to Brussels, net, in every single one of the 3,652 days (including two leap years) of the last ten years, £11 million. Or, £77 million per week.A brand-new, fully-equipped, state-of-the-art, 800-bed city-centre general hospital in the UK costs around £250 million. If, instead of paying that cumulative net contribution of £40 billion (ie £40,000 million) over to Brussels, the government had spent it on brand-new hospitals, we would now be enjoying the facilities of 160 of them, having in total 128,000 beds.

    http://www.sovereignty.org.uk/featur...es/rebut2.html

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackpool View Post
    My mistake...

    The UK has paid over to Brussels, net, in every single one of the 3,652 days (including two leap years) of the last ten years, £11 million. Or, £77 million per week.A brand-new, fully-equipped, state-of-the-art, 800-bed city-centre general hospital in the UK costs around £250 million. If, instead of paying that cumulative net contribution of £40 billion (ie £40,000 million) over to Brussels, the government had spent it on brand-new hospitals, we would now be enjoying the facilities of 160 of them, having in total 128,000 beds.

    http://www.sovereignty.org.uk/featur...es/rebut2.html
    Its fine. Thanx for the source.

    I do agree money should be disrupted to countries equally, depending on the current economic state and size of the population. Whether for Britain to leave the EU is a decision I believe needs to be taken cautiously and with care. We need to assess future consequences and how this may impact on Britain and its relationships with other countries.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    I was looking at myself talking to myself and I realized this conversation...I was having with myself looking at myself was a conversation with myself that I needed to have with myself.

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thinker View Post
    If Turkey becomes a part of Nato it would have to subscribe the above which means it would be duty bound to fight alongside Nato troops against any enemy including Muslims. I believe if they would agree to that it would make for a more stable world. Of course you and I know how many ways that would breach Islamic teachings inclusing 3:28.
    Turkey has been a member of NATO since 1952!



    Quote Originally Posted by Blackpool View Post
    If, instead of paying that cumulative net contribution of £40 billion (ie £40,000 million) over to Brussels, the government had spent it on brand-new hospitals, we would now be enjoying the facilities of 160 of them, having in total 128,000 beds.
    Or at least we might be if we could afford to maintain them, staff them, and buy the drugs for the patients in them. All of which are far, far more expensive than the cost of building them in the first place.

    The piece is little-Englander rubbish. $4bn a year is relative peanuts in terms of the overall budget, provides enormous economic benefits far in excess of that they choose to ignore, and the idea the money could somehow be converted directly into building that many hospitals is just plain silly.

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Argamemnon View Post
    I don't care, I'm not European. I want a Middle Eastern Union
    I agree. Turkey should be part of Middle East rather than Europe
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Dear Allah. I pray that whoever reads this message shall have your comfort, joy, peace, love, & guidance. I may not know their troubles, but you do. Please keep protecting us. Ameen.

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ar-RaYYan View Post
    I agree. Turkey should be part of Middle East rather than Europe
    Turkey straddles two continents; there's no reason why it can't have a dual union role. If you're talking about a confederation of exclusively Middle East nations, then id say that the Arab League fulfils that purpose. But if you're talking about an alliance that coheres political, social, economic activities of nation states, then i find it hard to see how a union like that, modelled on the EU, can be established in the Middle East. The US has long forestalled that, because they know that its hard enough dealing with organisations like OPEC, and if this proposal went ahead, it would likely spell problems for American foregin policy in the region. That's why i think they preserve with such tenacity, the dictatorships of the middle east.

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Nearly always when this issue is discussed, the benefits for turkey and the positive signal for the muslim world is mentioned, and an "indirect thread" that turkey will fall of the west and into a radical "taliban-like" state when they can't join the EU.

    That is _not_ the a good way if you wan't to join a _closed_ society.

    Turkey should convince the EU how the EU will benefit from it's membership and not the other way around!
    They have to argue why states like France, Germany and GB, who are net-payers, should want Turkey to be a member and not threaten and argue with "fear of muslims".


    The problem is: There actually is no benefit for the EU to take turkey. I'd say it would cripple the EU.

    The EU is already overstrained with all the new members and it will take years and years of financial aid to bring the new members in eastern europe on a comparable level like the founding states.
    Turkey is a big country with lots of people and a very poorly developed east.

    The EU simply does not have the financial power finance the development of a country like Turkey.

    The shear size of Turkey brings another problem: It would have a big voting power, comparable to Germany and France, the moment it joins even though it would receive probably the most money in aid from all member states.
    And let's face it: Turkey is a very very nationalistic country. Talking about the Armenian issue is an absolute taboo and only a distorted version of it is though in schools.
    Only a few years ago there still was a law forbidding any insult to "Turkishness".

    The large voting power combined with the nationalism of Turkey would probably cripple EU's ability to find agreements on important issues like a unified forgein policy (think about the clash of opinion concerning israel between turkey and the rest of the EU).

    Concerning workforce: Yeah Turkey could offer a lot of man-power, but what the EU-economy needs is highly educated personal and not masses of poorly educated people and we wouldn't need EU-membership for that: We already take any qualified workforce with open arms!

    Concerning trade: There are already long established trade-contracts between Turkey and the EU; there wouldn't be much change there.

    Concerning signal to muslims: I don't buy it and i think it is the most dishonest argument of them all and actually is more a threat.
    People who buy the argument that the EU would deny the Turkish membership simply because of the fact that they are muslim, are not open the arguments anyways and the suicide bombers in the middle east probably don't even know what the EU is!
    The "Islam-argument" is just a way for Turkey to pressure their way into the EU and get the financial aid that they want.

    So from the perspective of the EU we have:

    - large financial burden
    - a lot more trouble to find a agreements
    - potential trouble because of the geographic location of the borders

    I don't see any benefit for the EU to take Turkey.


    Right now the EU must be concerned with itself and try to integrate the new member states, which hasn't even really started yet.
    In maybe 50 years we can think about this issue again.

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    ^good points, although turkey has better relations with Israel than you think.
    I'd say Turkey won't join the EU, but will pressure for benefits etc as a 'semi-member' until the Arab regimes are replaced at least.
    Last edited by alcurad; 08-11-2009 at 12:54 AM.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    ” إن الأمة التي تحسن صناعة الموت توهب لها الحياة”

    正直・・・微妙

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thinker View Post
    You said . . . "Turkey should be allowed in the EU anyway - its a vital asset of Nato"

    Nato Article 5
    The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defence recognised by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area


    If Turkey becomes a part of Nato it would have to subscribe the above which means it would be duty bound to fight alongside Nato troops against any enemy including Muslims. I believe if they would agree to that it would make for a more stable world. Of course you and I know how many ways that would breach Islamic teachings inclusing 3:28.

    You might also want to note that Cyprus is now protected by article 5.
    1 Turkey is part of Nato
    2 - how would sending Turkish troops to Afganistan make it a more stable place??? or even more crazy the world??? Your world maybe but not the real world. More militery means more militery reactions.
    3 - nice genralisation - sometimes you seem to brush the "muslims" as the enemy.

    Turkish army helps nato quite a bit anyway. Thats well known.
    Last edited by Zafran; 08-11-2009 at 01:44 AM.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Do you think the pious don't sin?

    They merely:
    Veiled themselves and didn't flaunt it
    Sought forgiveness and didn't persist
    Took ownership of it and don't justify it
    And acted with excellence after they had erred - Ibn al-Qayyim

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thinker View Post
    they want to migrate to the UK and as soon as they get to the UK they want to change the culture of the country to same culture that caused the country the left to fail. .
    How many countries in the world where the immigrants changed the native cultures? .. yeah many... Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Argentina etc. So it's ok for the Westerners to change the natives' cultures?
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Assalamualaykum... I am back!!

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by north_malaysian View Post
    How many countries in the world where the immigrants changed the native cultures? .. yeah many... Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Argentina etc. So it's ok for the Westerners to change the natives' cultures?
    Well same can be also said about every non arab muslim country. But its not the point, people can not blame us, europeans, that we want to remain as we are now. It is a natural attitude, common also to a Mexican, Persian, Korean and Turk. All of them want to save their heritage, simply because it is theirs, it belongds to those who died, who are alive and who will be born. Im not suprised that Tariq Ramadan, person influenced by Muslim Brotherhood, has such opinions, he has particular aims behind it, he wants us, europeans to accept the cultural and civilizational change as something normal. But of course, if he was living in his country of origin, let it be Egypt, he would be definitely against multicultural society, as Egypt must be islamic state. But now in Europe he plays liberal, defender of human rights and freedom of religion, which he would condemn with disgust as western, kaafir influence if he stayed in his muslim country of origin. But here we should say firmly, that the blame lays in 90% on us, europeans. The mistake is not letting in immigrants but it's current liberal democracy. Im not suprised why aware and inteligent muslims like Tariq Ramadan or for example Skye on this forum, are in favour of liberal democracy in Europe and USA. They would condemn it fiercely in Egypt or Pakistan, but here in Europe and USA it serves their aims.
    Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    This country is dying because of a lack of men, not a lack of programs.

    - Corneliu Zelea Codreanu

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    Re: Turkey is part of Europe. Fear keeps it out of the EU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zafran View Post
    1 Turkey is part of Nato
    2 - how would sending Turkish troops to Afganistan make it a more stable place??? or even more crazy the world??? Your world maybe but not the real world. More militery means more militery reactions.
    3 - nice genralisation - sometimes you seem to brush the "muslims" as the enemy.

    Turkish army helps nato quite a bit anyway. Thats well known.
    Turkey is a member of Nato – I stand corrected And Turkey has troops in Afghanistan . . . .

    FM Ismail Cem says in an interview Ankara will deploy 90 special forces troops to Afghanistan. (This will make Turkey the first Muslim nation to join the US-led attacks on the Taliban

    I find myself with an overwhelming urge to wave the Turkish flag – well done Turkey


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